CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo., Aug. 8, 2003 — An exhibit titled “Discovery: Paintings of the Lewis & Clark Trail by Kenneth A. Holder” opens at the Southeast Missouri State University Museum Aug. 25.
The exhibition includes 14 acrylic paintings, six watercolors and six sketchbooks from Holder’s Lewis and Clark Trail Project.
Holder, professor emeritus at Illinois State University, began his Lewis and Clark Trail Project in 1996. He spent his summers retracing the Lewis and Clark Trail and making drawings, watercolors and photographs of the areas he visited. Back in his studio, Holder used the preparatory works to create monumental paintings of places like La Barge Rock-this work measures 5 by 21 feet-the area around Fort Benton, and the Columbia River.
Holder says his one rule was that he would depict only the landscape that could be seen from the Trail, or the Trail itself. His goal was “to picture the Trail as it appears today; including the remote locations that have changed little in the last two hundred years, like the White Cliffs in Montana, as well as the cities, bridges, and dams that were built since [Lewis and Clark’s] exploration.”
The resulting images highlight the changes that have occurred in the 200 years since Lewis and Clark first traveled across America.
A public reception for “Discovery: Paintings of the Lewis & Clark Trail by Kenneth A. Holder” will be held Friday, Sept. 19, from 4 to 6 p.m. in the Museum galleries. Holder will be on hand and present a Gallery Talk at 5 p.m. He will discuss his work and his travels on the Lewis and Clark Trail. Refreshments will be provided.
On Saturday, Sept. 20 from noon to 4 p.m., Holder will be in the Museum galleries to meet and talk with visitors. Catalogues of “Discovery: Paintings of the Lewis & Clark Trail by Kenneth A. Holder” will be available for purchase.
Dr. Joni Kinsey, associate professor in the School of Art and Art History at the University of Iowa, will present a lecture in conjunction with “Discovery: Paintings of the Lewis & Clark Trail by Kenneth A. Holder” on Thursday, Sept. 25 at 7 p.m. in the Museum galleries. Kinsey will discuss contemporary and modern artists who have portrayed sights from along Lewis and Clark’s expedition route in a presentation titled “On the Trail of Lewis and Clark: Artists Then and Now.”
Kinsey’s doctorate in 18th and 19th century American and European Art is from Washington University in St. Louis. She specializes in landscape and the art of the American West. Her 1996 book Plain Pictures: Images of the American Prairie won the Eugene M. Kayden National Book Award-an annual award presented to a book published by a university press that makes an important contribution to the humanities. Recent lectures include “I Wished for the Pencil of Salvator Rosa: The Artistic Legacy of Lewis and Clark” presented at the South Dakota Historical Society’s bicentennial symposium of the Lewis and Clark Expedition and “American Landscape Art: Issues, Images, and Ideologies” presented at Augustana College in Rock Island, Ill.
All events associated with the exhibit are free and open to the public, and are located in the Museum galleries.
“Discovery: Paintings of the Lewis & Clark Trail by Kenneth A. Holder” closes on Oct. 5.
The University Museum is located in Memorial Hall on the campus of Southeast Missouri State University. It is open Monday-Friday, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and Saturday-Sunday, noon to 4 p.m. For more information, please call (573) 651-2260 or visit the Museum’s Web site at http://www5.semo.edu/museum.
University Museum programs are supported by a congressionally directed grant administered by the Institute of Museum and Library Services.